My parents had this painting long before they ever had me. As a child, I had always liked it, but when I started horseback riding, I began to love it.
My parents thought that if I were going to ride, I should ride often. Within a year, the owner of the barn took my mother aside, “We think Mary should lease a horse to show…” and so it began. That first horse was a rangy intellectual, an older gentleman who taught me well. He was a bay – a horse with a light brown coat and a black mane and tail. I was smitten.
After a year, my trainer approached my mother, “Mary has really improved. She should get a horse that can take her places. I know about this one mare….” And my lovely Brevon was replaced with silky and kind chestnut Summer Hill.
I showed Summer when I was thirteen and fourteen. The show schedule was so intense that her delicate legs started to fail her. My parents were told, “It’s time to look into another horse.”
I leased a horse that surely did quantum physics for fun and calculated pi to pass time between classes at horse shows. Six Pack was an enormous gray horse with a personality to match.
Years after I stopped riding, I was looking at that painting with my father.
“Funny how my horses looked like those horses in the painting.”
“It’s not funny at all,” answered Tata, “You wanted those horses and you got them.” He smiled and looked at me over the top of his glasses, “At least that is what they would say, right?”
“Geesh, pops, you mean sometimes they are right?”
And the two of us turned our attention to the painting again.